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8 Tips to Help You Shop for Credit Card Processing

Whether you're a new D.C. considering credit card processing for the first time, or an established D.C. considering a switch, it's important to be prepared so you come away feeling good about your decision. Most D.C.s understand the need to accept credit cards and the benefits of doing so. But when you're ready to sign up for credit card processing services or switch processors, where do you begin?

Here are the first of 8 tips to help you shop for credit card processing:

  1. Understand Interchange. An interchange fee is attached to each transaction and is the primary cost of accepting credit cards. It is a percentage of the transaction amount and is paid by you, through your merchant processor, to your customer/patient’s issuing bank. Interchange fees are determined by the payment brands (MasterCard, Visa, etc.) and vary depending on the type of card (e.g. debit, credit, reward). Different card types carry different transaction risks and therefore fees vary.
  2. Think About How You’ll Process. Will you accept debit cards? American Express? Would you like to offer pre-paid gift cards as way of generating new referrals? Is there a need for mobile processing? Will you use a basic terminal or process through your practice management software?
  3. When Will Funds Be Transferred To Your Account. The industry standard is two business days, but depending on the company you choose it could be longer. Reliable companies will transfer funds as quickly as possible and not hold your money.
  4. Review Merchant Agreements. These can be wordy. After all, it’s money transferring between card associations, financial institutions and bank accounts. That said it’s important to review them to ensure you understand all the terms and conditions. And ask questions! We’ve talked to hundreds of D.C.s who are stuck in bad agreements because they didn’t review them closely. This mistake can cost you money.

Read four more tips to help you choose a credit card processor. In the meantime, when you’re ready to shop or compare processing services, we invite you to consult with one of NCMIC’s fully-trained, non-commissioned representatives about the benefits of processing credit cards with us.

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